indoor rainforest at the Mirage
The Forum Shops at Caesar's Palace (awesome ambiance, and taking the spiral escalator was cool!), the Kush and Peter Lik art galleries, ornate fountains and daytime sky murals on the ceilings of the kitschy, Roman-esque casino (cool!)
Fountain Show at the Bellagio
Volcano Show at the Mirage
Flamingo Habitat at Flamingo Hotel & Casino
"Sirens of TI" Show at Treasure Island - SO CHEESY, and pretty risque for a street performance
African Acrobats at Circus Circus - Contortion, human pyramid building, and the most impressive limbo-ing I've ever seen (with a really bad opening act from a clown - I really felt bad for the guy)
Admired in awe, the whimsical Conservatory at the Bellagio - Like a scene from "Alice in Wonderland"
"Sense of Place" exhibit at the Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art - "more than 30 artworks ranging from paintings, photographs and video installation that contrast and compare both approach and expressionism in landscape art. From Claude Monet's impressionistic haystacks painted in 1885 to Vik Muniz's carefully rendered pigment prints created in 2006, precise representational paintings are placed alongside austere abstract works in order to reveal how landscape has been portrayed by artists throughout history."
Blue Martini's [voted Best!] happy hour
Cirque Du Soleil's "O" at the Bellagio - "An aquatic masterpiece of surrealism and theatrical romance," and pretty much the most amazing thing I've ever seen on a stage (well, besides Lion King on Broadway in high school, heh heh)
Fountain Show at the BellagioThe opulent, multi-storied, shimmery chandelier at the Cosmopolitan
The infamous "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas Nevada" sign
Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, its funky House of Blues venue, and Burger Bar, which features a $60 "Rossini" burger:"Kobe beef, sautéed foie gras, shaved truffles, on onion bun. Named after a XIX th century Italian composer whose love for fine food was legendary. The preparation always includes foie gras, truffles and a rich brown sauce, in this case, Black Perigord Truffle."
Lion Habitat at MGM Grand (includes a cute little cub!)
"I Lost My M in Vegas" interactive 3-D movie at 4-story M&Ms World
Costumes and history at Hard Rock Cafe
The Fremont Street Experience, a "project that blends vintage Las Vegas with high tech wonderment, live entertainment and more to create an attraction that rivals the famed Vegas Strip." I explored the shops, casinos, street performers (lookalikes including Michael Jackson, Prince, Barry Manilow, and 80's rock music tribute bands, all underneath the " world's largest screen," via the Viva Vision canopy and light show. The canopy towers 90 feet above the ground and spans the length of five football fields. Featuring more than 12 million LED modules displaying up to 16.7 million color combinations with a 555,000-watt sound system!" I watched "A Tribute to Queen," where I listened to "We Will Rock You" and "We are the Champions" while admiring the stunning graphics above, and "KISS Over Vegas," a tribute to the legendary foursome with hits like "Lick it Up," "Shout it out Loud" and "Rock 'n' Roll All Night."Monday, June 13th
rides," of which I went on all 3:
X-Scream - "A giant teeter-totter that propels you headfirst, 27 feet over the edge of the tower, 866 feet above the ground!" You won't find more authentic eagle-eye views like this, lol
Insanity - "A massive mechanical arm extending out 64 feet over the edge of the Stratosphere Tower at a height of over 900 feet, this Vegas ride will spin you in the open air at speeds of up to three 'G's, and you'll be propelled up to an angle of 70 degrees, which will tilt your body into one position — straight down!"
Big Shot - "You'll be shot 160 feet in the air at 45 miles per hour and in a matter of seconds be catapulted from the 921-foot high platform up the Tower's mast to a height of 1,081 feet and down again. Before you catch your breath, you'll be shot back up again at forces unmatched by other Vegas thrill parks."
gondola-filled canals. "Modeled after authentic Venetian gondolas, there are several gondolas on the canal and in the lagoon at any given time. The indoor gondolas make their way beneath bridges and below the quaint shops and cafés that line the canal running through the Grand Canal Shoppes, and architecture inspired by Venice landmarks, and with eloquent singing of the gondoliers, you'll feel as if you have truly been transported to Italy." The entertaining moving statues and operatic performances were noteworthy as well.
I went from Italy to France in only a short walk to Paris Hotel & Casino just down the street (I love Vegas), where I opted into the 7 Buffets in 24 Hours deal, starting with Le Village Buffet, which compared to The Buffet at the Wynn, was pretty disappointing, except the village-like ambiance in the "Town Square" where they sat me.
Next I went to Carnival World Buffet at Rio Hotel & Casino. Stations with cuisines from different parts of the world was delicious.
Then I went up to the 11th story of the Eiffel Tower Restaurant for a good view of the strip and the Bellagio's Fountain Show.
Next I went to the top of the Eiffel Tower, a 1/2-size to scale replica of the original, where at the little observation deck I took in breathtaking views at 460 feet above the heart of the Strip - this boasted even better views than at the top of the Stratosphere in my opinion, as this was right in the middle of it all, closer to the action, and also had unparalleled views of the Fountain Show at the Bellagio.
Tuesday, June 14th
|View f/ Top of Eiffel Tower|
Spice Market Buffet at Planet Hollywood (My rating = 3 of 5 stars)After nearly dying at the end of each one and completing all 7 buffets in 24 hours, I treated myself to a few hours of fun in the sun and playing in the pool at Caesar's Palace.
Paradise Garden Buffet at the Flamingo (My rating = 3 of 5 stars)
Emperor's Buffet at Imperial Palace (My rating = 2 of 5 stars)
Flavors Buffet at Harrah's (My rating = 3 of 5 stars)
Lago Buffet Caesar's Palace (My rating = 4 of 5 stars)
Then I rode the roller-coaster at New York New York with a new acquaintance I got chatting with, Dave from Dublin, who is in town for wedding.
I ended the night with a walk around the urban Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino, and grabbing at bite at Blondies Sports Bar & Grill (Garlic Bread Balls - olled dough, deep fried and tossed in a garlic butter sauce topped with parmesan and served with marinara sauce).
Wednesday, June 15th
Today I blogged, played poker with my fellow hostelers, and went to Krave, a small gay nightclub. Nothing special, but it was nice to experience some of the nightlife.
Thursday, June 16th
Today looked a lot like yesterday, except I went to the clubs with Daniel, a German guy around my age. We went to Krave, because we could get in free (I was on a guest list for the first time ever, lol). He was a good sport (never been to a gay bar before), encouraging us not to leave until I worked up the courage to talk to some guys, and he was even able to admit that the Latino go-go dancer was in great shape :)
|Fountain Show f/ Eiffel Tower|
Friday, June 17th
Blogged, blogged, blogged. Met Akihiro, a happy, enthusiastic 24 year-old guy from Japan. He was giddy looking at my photos while I ate dinner with the wonderful Swiss couple that whipped up a yummy spaghetti dinner for the 3 of us. All four of us and a bunch of the other hostelers paid $25 for a ride in a stretch limo down The Strip to the famous "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas" sign, then up to Fremont Street for a pub crawl. Other than breaking my $1 sandals (big loss, lol) I had a great time!
The next morning I dropped Akihiro off and I left "Sin City," heading to Valley of Fire State Park.
The constant snapping of call girl/strip club promotional cards the Hispanic people flick in your face along sidewalks of the strip will never be missed.
Free parking at all the hotels/casinos!
Lots of free shows and things to do. I hardly gambled at all (only $5.00a casino gave it to me for joining the rewards club), filling my time with plenty of different things.